Fifteensquared

Never knowingly undersolved.

Guardian 24,439 – Paul

Posted by Uncle Yap on July 19th, 2008

Uncle Yap.

From Guardian Prize Crossword Saturday 12 July 2008
Common abbreviations used
dd = double definition
rev = reversed or reversal
ins = insertion
cha = charade
ha = hidden answer
*(fodder) = anagram

Not a very challenging puzzle from Paul, compared with his horrendous July Genius (which I am still struggling with at the time of writing this blog). This one is more of a weekday puzzle that one can solve on the commuter train.

Post Script : It wasn’t until I read the comments to this blog that I took out my finished grid and read around the perimeter and there was a message – HAPPY EIGHTIETH BIRTHDAY, MOTHER. What a thoughtful and filial son.

Across
8 RUSH HOUR Cha of RUSH (grass) H (heroin) OUR (the Guardian’s)
9 OWNING Ins of N (opening for neck) in OWING (in the red) – clothes is the insertion indicator
10 EASY ha
11 LITHOGRAPH Cha of LIT (sparked off) + replacement of (art) with RAP (criticism) in William HOGARTH (English artist 1697–1764)
12 HUSSAR Cha of huss (fish) A R (a river)
14 SEAMOUNT SE (south-east or Kentish) amount (aggregate)
15 TAPIOCA Cha of TAP (on tap is readily available) I O (I love) CA (half of cake) Contrary to the equation of pudding with tapioca, I have never been served tapioca pudding once in all my six years in the UK
17 MAESTRI MA (mother) ESTRI *(tries) plural of maestro
20 OCCASION OC (rev of CO) Casio (famous Japanese manufacturer of calculators) N (letter left after taking ‘ever’ from ‘never’)
22 ANYONE A + ins of Y (last letter of rally) in NONE (love)
23 MINCED MEAT One of those reversed anagram clue whereby the answer could well be an anagram clue for ‘team’
24 HEAT dd
25 YEARNS Ins of E (last letter of imaginative) in YARNS (stories)
26 POOH-POOH rev of Hoop X 2

Down
1 HULA-HULA Hula hoop
2 AHOY Hoy is a Scottish island
3 POPLAR Removal of U from POPULAR
4 PROTEST Ins of ROT (bull) in pest (pain in the neck)
5 YOKOHAMA YOKO (Ono, the widow of John Lennon, creator of the song ‘Imagine’) HAM (meat) A to give the Japanese port
6 ENORMOUSLY Ins of US in *(only more)
7 INSPAN Removal of ‘I’ from IN SPAIN (Costa del Sol)
13 SPINAL CORD *(island crop)
16 CHILDISH Chil (e) dish (beauty)
18 RENT-A-MOB Lovely &lit anagram clue *(team born)
19 UNKEMPT Bunk empty (bed lacking occupant) Now take away the first and last letter
21 CRIMEA Crime + A
22 AUTHOR Au (gild) Thor (Thunder God) which Jonathan was (Gulliver’s Travels)
24 HOPI Simple cha for a member of a Pueblo people living chiefly in NE Arizona

15 Responses to “Guardian 24,439 – Paul”

  1. croque says:

    It was a lovely way of saying happy birthday to his mother, though!

  2. bridgesong says:

    Well, I didn’t find this one at all easy: glad I didn’t have to blog it. One of Paul’s characteristics is that the elements in a charade clue (e.g. 8 across) are presented in the reverse order to how they are included in the solution; this isn’t necessarily unfair, but you need to be aware of it. It was only when I noticed the message round the perimeter that I was able to make real progress on this puzzle.

  3. Andrew says:

    As far as I remember I didn’t find this too hard for a Saturday puzzle, but I didn’t notice the birthday message at all, I’m sorry to say. Congratulations to Mrs Paul senior.

    (And I’m glad I’m not the only one having trouble with Paul’s Genius puzzle.)

  4. Qaos says:

    Just a quick extra on Paul’s Genius xword on the Guardian’s site, if you’re having trouble getting started, then I’m happy to email people hints depending on where they’re up to (to save putting any spoilers on this site). I agree it’s a tricky one, but once you spot a few useful pointers, it’s gets a good deal easier.

  5. Fletch says:

    As long as you think their consciences will prevent from them entering after your help. It is a prize puzzle after all, and a decent cash prize at that, not just a dictionary.

  6. Qaos says:

    Heh heh, true, but turning a 1-in-500 chance into a 1-in-502 chance (say) is something I’m not going to lose sleep over. I’d prefer them to enjoy the puzzle to it’s finish, win, then send me a cheque for a pint instead :-).

  7. Fletch says:

    However laudable your motives in wanting people to enjoy the puzzle, what it boils down to is you’re offering to help people cheat in a competition.

  8. nmsindy says:

    While I’m not sure it’s explicitly stated anywhere, I think the policy of this site is that answers should not be given before closing date for entries for prize puzzles (for obvious reasons).

    Private emails between individuals would be another matter perhaps, akin to having a private conversation.

  9. Fletch says:

    While you can never prevent people from discussing a puzzle privately with a family member or friend, to my mind there’s a world of difference between that and emailing a stranger touting a cheat service on a website, to put it bluntly.

    I’m prepared to accept though that it’s me that’s out of step on this one. It’s quite possibly the case that no-one has any compunction about cheating in comps these days with the proliferation of internet sites where one can go to obtain answers to prize puzzles. I tend to come from The Crossword Centre’s school of thought, i.e. that current competition puzzles shouldn’t be discussed prior to deadline.

  10. muck says:

    The question of help with prize-puzzle clues online had a lot of discussion on some of the talk.guardian.co.uk/crosswords threads a few months ago. I have given up on those threads because it was often difficult to know which puzzle was being referred to, but online disucssion of prize-puzzle clues is still going on there.

  11. nmsindy says:

    I’d agree with your comments under 9 above, Fletch.

  12. Qaos says:

    Goodness me, what a lot of bother from a well intended offer of some “hints” to get Uncle Yap & Andrew going. For the record, I clearly wasn’t going to post answers or even hints to this blog – it’s clearly not fair discussing a current puzzle that others don’t want to read about. I agree about the “private discussion” comment – I have other friends who do the Genius xword and have no problem with giving them hints when they’re stuck. I think there’s a big difference between gentle hints that aid understanding of a puzzle’s theme and actual answers, anyway. There are other sites people can go to if they just want to cheat.

    Also, in my defense, if Uncle Yap hadn’t made the comment about the Genius xword, I’d not have offered. Whilst I’m a stranger to him, I have read many of his well-written blog entries and so he’s slightly less of a stranger to me. I admit my inclusion of the word “people” in my original mail was a bit vague when it was intended for Uncle Yap and Andrew.

    Lastly, the “cheque for a pint” comment was intended as a joke – hence the smiley. Maybe I should have been clearer and said “two pints plus a packet of crisps”.

  13. nmsindy says:

    That clarifies it, Qaos, thanks. ‘Body language’ can be difficult to read on the Net. I think there’s no disagreement among anyone here.

  14. Fletch says:

    OK, I can now see that Qaos, upon seeing bloggers of the calibre of Uncle Yap and Andrew were struggling with it, simply wanted to show off.

    I expect he and I will do our best to avoid each other on this site in future.

  15. Qaos says:

    Fletch, I’m sorry you feel that way and equally sorry that you’re not reading my entries in the spirit in which they were intended. I don’t believe my post was showing off – I wrote above that I also found the Genius xword tricky. I’m not quite sure how an offer of help gets turned into an accusation of showing off … how else could I have offered?

    Anyway, nay mind. For the site moderators, I won’t post any more on this subject – there’s nothing worse for a good blog to be ruined by an endless argument! I’ll keep my future posts to the daily (non-prize) xwords only.

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